U.S. using Tunisia to conduct drone operations in Libya: U.S. sources

U.S. has secretly expanded its global network of drone bases to North Africa

Source: Reuters

The United States has begun using a Tunisian air base to conduct surveillance drone operations inside Libya, the latest expansion of its campaign against Islamic State militants in North Africa, U.S. government sources said on Wednesday.

The unarmed drones have been flying out of Tunisia since late June and are now part of a U.S. air defense in support of Libyan pro-government forces fighting to push Islamic State fighters out of their stronghold in the Libyan city of Sirte, the officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

The use of the Tunisian base, which was first reported by The Washington Post, extends the U.S. military’s ability to gather intelligence on Islamic State in Libya, the U.S. sources said. Other locations in Africa where U.S. drones are launched, including Niger and Djibouti, are farther away.

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